I just read an article in the Sunday paper about the top five Olympic Ice Skating moments and I’ll admit I teared up a little. I remember watching each moment that they deemed worthy and it took me back to my childhood. My mom loved to watch Olympic skating and I learned my appreciation of it from her.
That appreciation is the reason I was so excited to see this interview in Working Mother magazine with Krisit Yamaguchi. I remember watching her skate when I was a teenager so it was fun to see what she’s been doing since she left the Olympic stage.
In the interview she opened up about life after the Olympics and what drove her to perform all those years.
Here’s an excerpt:
What do you remember about winning the 1992 Olympic figure skating championship?
I remember watching the skaters, wondering what was going to happen. And then there was this incredible feeling of excitement and relief. Winning in women’s singles felt surreal. I felt that everything I had done—the hard work, the tough times—was all worth it.
Were they your idols growing up?
Dorothy Hamill was my big idol as a kid. She’d won the Olympics in 1976. She was America’s sweetheart with her personality, her talent, her haircut. I gravitated toward her. Not knowing what the Olympics entailed, I wanted to be like her.
How have Keara and Emma changed your life?
I want to be there for my kids. My priorities have changed drastically, and I’m lucky I was ready for that. I’d done everything I ever wanted to do in skating. I’d toured with Stars on Ice for ten years. I was ready to hang up the skates, unpack my suitcase and not pack it for a very long time.
Tell me about your daughters.
After the first one is born, you think the second one will be the same—but she’s not. Keara is very social, outgoing and adaptable. I see a lot of myself in Emma. She’s Mommy’s girl, like I was. She’s a little shy in social situations until she gets comfortable. Keara is more artistic. She loves imaginary play. Emma has really good athletic ability. She’s physically tough. It will be interesting to see what they choose to do.
Kristi has led a pretty interesting life, before and after the Olympics. She’s been such a dynamo throughout her life, that we can actually take a page out of her book for our driven kids. Sometimes it’s hard to let them follow their dreams when they aren’t exactly in line with our own.
Read the rest of the article at Working Mother.